A security guard who told a gay man to stop kissing in a McDonald’s in Leicester, has now been prohibited from working in any of its branches.
23 year old Matthew Dummigan was in the Market Street branch of McDonald’s when the incident occurred.
“I’d finished work and gone for a couple of drinks with friends after work, and we went to McDonald’s because we always go after a night out, and we were stood there at the counter and my friend pecked me on the cheek and then on the lips.”
“I looked over at the security guard. He said ‘No kissing in here.”
Matthew, a regular at McDonald’s, had frequently seen other public displays of affection in the fast food outlet.
“I’ve seen people kissing in there, I’ve seen women sitting on men’s knees. For me, that no kissing was a bit like, okay, so what if it was a female?”
The security guard admitted that if it was a female it would be okay. The homophobic comment made a big impact on Matthew.
“We’re allowed to get happily married, happily divorced, so it’s just that situation that an everyday thing is still kind of shunned or not accepted.”
This attitude towards gay people surprised and unsettled the 23 year old.
“I didn’t realise how much homophobia was still out there.”
“To get it from an adult, especially an authoritative figure, it was really difficult because I’ve never experienced it.”
I’ve never been so upset in my life,” says Matthew. “For me personally, public displays of affection aren’t normal or a common thing anyway so the one time it actually happens, and this happens…it was strange.”
The experience had an extremely negative effect on him “It made me feel like dirt, and it made me feel so small,” he says.
A spokesman for McDonald’s has issued the following statement:
“We are very sorry for Mr Dummigan’s experience and have taken this complaint seriously. Whilst conducting an internal investigation the individual employed by a third party security firm was suspended. We have now concluded this investigation and he has been removed permanently from working in any McDonald’s restaurant.”